Cubs probably won't be a fit for Halladay

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halladay.jpgKen Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com write that the Cubs would love to trade for Roy Halladay, however they would need to clear salary in order to pull off such a deal, according to major league sources.



Halladay is owed $15.75 million in
2010, but the Cubs already have $42.375 million tied up in Carlos
Zambrano, Ryan Dempster and Ted Lilly. Alfonso Soriano and Kosuke
Fukudome are too expensive to move in a trade while Aramis Ramirez is
too valuable. Derek Lee, who makes $13 million next season,
would drum up at least some interest coming off a bounce-back season, however he has a full no-trade clause.




On Friday, Carrie Muskat of MLB.com had basically the same conclusion,
saying the Cubs can’t take on Halladay’s salary, while also noting that
they are hesitant to part with prospect Starlin Castro.




Face it, any contender would love to
trade for a pitcher of Halladay’s caliber, but the Cubs have more
pressing concerns, namely finding a new center fielder, a second baseman
and a taker for the two years remaining on Milton Bradley’s contract.

Astros’ bullpen throws combined one-hitter for MLB-best 30th win

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The Astros’ bullpen did yeoman’s work in place of the injured Dallas Keuchel on Monday against the Tigers. Keuchel is temporarily sidelined with a pinched nerve in his neck.

Brad Peacock made the spot start, limiting the Tigers to one hit and two walks with eight strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings. Chris Devenski took over with one out in the fifth, finishing out that inning as well as the sixth and seventh, facing the minimum. Will Harris pitched a perfect eighth and Ken Giles closed out the 1-0 victory in the ninth. Devenski, Harris, and Giles each had two strikeouts.

The Astros scored their only run in the bottom of the first inning as George Springer drew a leadoff walk, then scored on Jose Altuve‘s one-out double. Tigers starter Brad Fulmer pitched well enough to win on most days, giving up the lone run in seven frames.

After Monday’s win, the Astros became the first team to reach 30 wins, sitting on a 30-15 record. With a +55 run differential, even their expected record matches up with their actual record.

Brandon Phillips hit his 200th career home run

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Braves second baseman Brandon Phillips became the 337th player in baseball history to hit 200 career home runs, driving a solo home run to left-center field during Monday night’s home game against the Pirates. Phillips is the 14th second baseman (who played a min. of 75 percent of his career games at the position) to rack up at least 200 career home runs.

Phillips, 35, entered Monday’s action batting .290/.345/.405 with two home runs and 12 RBI in 142 plate appearances. If he’s anything, he’s consistent, as he finished with an adjusted OPS between 90-99 (100 is average) every year between 2012-16 and it was sitting at 97 coming into Monday.